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on 2 July 2014
This was a totally unexpected gem. I was half expecting it to be a weaker version of the Hunger Games and what I got instead was utterly spectacular. Tella seems a little bit ditzy at first but she soon shows herself to be a strong, capable and kind character. The rest of the cast is pretty well fleshed out and extremely varied, from the frightening Titus, to the maternal Caroline to Tella's love interest, Guy. The Pandoras are an interesting idea and are as different as their human counterparts. It had everything from twists that I did not see coming, to places where I actually teared up: something a book hasn't made me do in a while.

I checked the author's website and was totally thrilled to find that this will be a trilogy. if anybody's wondering the second book will be released early 2015 and called 'Salt and Stone.'
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on 25 July 2014
Gripping, suspenseful and original, Fire & Flood is definitely a book to watch out for this year!

Tella is a sixteen-year-old girl whose older brother – Cody, is sick with a terminal illness. He’s not getting any better and all Tella can do is watch him fade away. When the opportunity arises for Tella to enter a race called that Brimstone Bleed, a race that could lead her to a once in a life time offer – a cure for Cody. Tella knows she has no alternative; she must enter even though she doesn’t know the rules or even if she believes it's real. But when she arrives at the destination picked by the makers, Tella knows that this race is real and she knows she needs to win.

Before I started Fire & Blood I was expecting was a dystopian kind of world, mainly because I hadn’t heard much about the book nor did I look into it before starting it. Imagine my surprise when I started reading and it’s actually a modern day setting. This actually threw me; I really found it a little mind-bogglingly that something like the Brimstone Bleed would exist in the modern day world. I found I needed answers that at that time couldn’t be answered, because not even Tella knew them. It was a case of waiting it out, which meant I needed to read – quicker. I was dying for some answers and when it’s revealed, it’s a very original storyline – one I don’t recall reading anything alike and I found myself falling in love with the whole world Victoria Scott created.
The Brimstone Bleed really is an intriguing race, even though it’s somewhat horrifying at times. The whole creation is scary; however there are some bright spots in the story like for example the Pandora’s – the creations that help each person who enters the race try to win. Some are scary but mostly they are absolutely fantastic creations and really, I want one for myself. Very original!

Tella at the start of the story is a weak person, one a little self-centred if I’m honest. But she quickly changes as she heads in into the race and starts living the horrid experience, she becomes stronger and her thoughts quickly change – rather than thinking about shopping and her best friend – she soon starts seeing why she’s there all along; for her brother. She really starts to see what is at stake and how far people are willing to go to get what they want. Then there’s Guy. He’s a bit of a scary brut to start with but somehow, he manages to help Tella in some way or another from the moment they first meet. He's very closed off but soon he starts opening up and becomes a strong and lovable character, but one that still holds many secrets. We also meet a lot of other characters – Caroline, Harper, Jaxon, Dink and Ransom, the list can go on. They all bring something to the story along with their Pandora’s and it’s really fascinating to watch all these characters and the story line all come together.

And the ending, although somewhat frustrating because you’re left dying to know what happens next, it also leaves so many questions about what’s to come next. The race isn’t over – and it seems there’s more to this race than ever and I can’t wait to find out.
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on 7 March 2014
Full to the brim of action and adventure, Victoria will make you laugh one second to making you heart ache the next! Stunningly quick pace and engaging, you will be instantly drawn in. The cover is eye-catching and interesting, it captures Tella's feather making us wonder as to whether her feather is more important than it first appears.

When you are given the chance to win a cure for the ones you love, would you go after it? Tella's brother is dying from cancer, so when an invitation to participate in the Brimstone Bleed in mysteriously left in Tella's possession, she enters without a seconds thought. However, what Tella doesn't realise is that it will dramatically put her own life at risk; Would you risk your life to cure the ones you love?

In FIRE & FLOOD we are presented with a lovely, kind and caring protagonist, Tella. Throughout the novel we are presented with key aspects of her personality, she is fun with a huge sense of humour. Furthermore, she is girly making the Contenders instantly assume she is not fit for this race; this is a great aspect of this story enabling us to see her prove continuously throughout the novel her confidence and strength which grows ever stronger.

I try to maintain a face that says: Yes, that is what I said. Let it be known to all who travel this desert dune. Hear ye. I mentally stab a staff into the ground...
FIRE & FLOOD by Victoria Scott (Page 237 in Paperback)

Guy is our mysterious and captivating male, also known as 'Green Beret' or 'Serial killer-looking dude'; Guy appears to know how to survive through the trials and holds a perplexing alongside alluring confidence in his actions. He holds true strength and power and I am certainly looking forward to learning more about him in the second instalment. Another character whom I liked was Harper, she didn't care what people thought of her and just battled through; like Guy she holds secrets and is strong-willed and determined.

Maybe Guy is filled with lies. Or maybe he has an ulterior motive in telling me what he has. But just for tonight, I decide to throw caution to the wind. And trust him completely.
FIRE & FLOOD by Victoria Scott (Page 262 in Paperback)

I loved the uniqueness and imagination that was incorporated into this novel, especially the inventions of the Pandoras, watching them evolve and what forms they could take brought danger, companionship and mystery to this story; How were they created? Where were they created? All I know is that I want one, preferably Madox! This novel was filled with mystery, suspense, peril and twists, showing how companionship, courage, teamwork and determination can help you escape your worst nightmare. I am thoroughly looking forward to Fire & Flood #2, I need it NOW!

*Received from publisher - Chicken House - in exchange for an honest review*
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on 18 May 2015
One of the worst books I've ever read, there is no plot line and it basically copies the hunger games. The main character is pathetic and relies on prince charming to rescue her, this man's name? Guy. Yes you heard me right. Guy. What on earth. Waste of time and money
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I absolutely enjoyed this adventurous little tale. Granted its not exactly a new story and does borrow heavily from things such as the Hunger Games – but it is given a boost by the creation of the “Pandora’s” something I’ll come back to shortly. Also I’m kind of a sucker for a main character who is, well, pretty useless to be honest when it comes to survival. Still she muddles through and I found watching her muddle through to be highly entertaining.

So the basic premise is this – Tella gets offered the chance to compete in The Brimstone Bleed, the ultimate prize being a cure for her terminally ill Brother. Only one can win (yes sounds familiar but bear with me) and it involves survival over a number of terrains, the winner of each individual portion getting an interim boost. Once we reach there, this departs from being anything else and becomes its own thing.

Each contestant gets an egg – which hatches into a Pandora. Created by a team of scientists each Pandora is a creature of special talent. All different and all very well imagined, the Pandora’s are attached to their competitors and make a beautiful sideline to the rest of the action going on. To be honest I was far more attached to these than I was to any of the human cast – mess with the people for sure but leave those magical delights alone. Maddox had better survive this series – I’m giving a quick frowned look in the direction of Victoria Scott here – hoping she’ll remember the “kill a million people but never kill the dog” rule. Yes you all know what I mean.

It is pacy and fun to read – some edge of the seat moments and a touch of Romance which is a pretty required element these days and in this case I was very engaged by it. The male love interest is a “tough Guy”, ha, with his own agenda which comes to light later and the supporting cast who join Tella on her journey are an eclectic bunch of which Harper was my favourite – I’m looking forward to seeing what she does next for sure.

I purchased this (and the next novel Salt and Stone) in my latest round of mad book buying which was focussed on upping my YA collection and I’m very glad I chose it. What I was looking for was pure entertainment, an engaging story and some characters I could get behind and basically that is exactly what I got. Whilst Tella is not a kick ass female of the Katniss variety, she is very compelling and fun to be around (anyway I think Harper can do all the kicking of ass necessary if you are looking for the quintissential tough girl) and I was very happy to follow along with her and the rest of them.

The world building is low key to be sure but I get the feeling that this is going to come into its own over the course of the next novel – the author giving us a twist to the tale and hints of what is to come. Fire and Flood concentrated on the people and the race and was a fast, often humerous, pleasing tale and I’m very much looking forward to reading the next.

Reviews being very up and down it seems as if this is a very subjective book. All I can say is I was addicted to it and would definitely recommend you try it if you are a fan of YA Dystopia. I dare you not to fall in love with Maddox. Double dare you!

Happy Reading Folks.
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on 9 July 2016
Fire and Flood is a pulse pumping thriller, filled with so much action and tension that we ourselves are dragged into the race, kicking and screaming as Tella powers her way through danger. Sure to be a perplexing series for years to come!

First up, I stormed through Fire and Flood and seriously questioned why I hadn’t picked it up sooner.

It’s hard to believe that this little bundle of awesome-ness has been sat on my shelf for the better part of 5 months gathering dust. And now it’s firmly sat on my special favourites shelf.

I instantly connected with Tella, her sassy and sarcastic attitude was just the kick the story needed to take off before the real action began. I admired her integrity and determination given her situation and it was pretty hard not to root for this girl from the offset.

Tella’s older brother Cody has a rare incurable disease that is slowly killing him and it is heartbreaking to follow Tella’s and Cody’s strained relationship as Cody slowly deteriorates but their sibling love shines through their humorous banter. So naturally when Tella receives a mysterious device with a message telling her she has 48 hours to report to the Pandora Selection Process in order to compete in a competition called the Brimstone Bleed, she doesn’t even hesitate. As the promised prize is The Cure, something that will cure any ailment or disease. but there can only be one winner.

Tella is swiftly swept into this seemingly sci-fi world as she enters the Pandora Selection Process as possible Contenders fight each other for Eggs. These Eggs are a complete mystery until they start hatching in the first ecosystem of the race. The Pandora’s are genetically engineered animals that are created for the sole purpose of helping their Contender survive the race. The Pandoras are amazing and adorable and a brilliant addition to a story already brimming with so much character.

The Brimstone Bleed itself lasts three months and covers four different ecosystems: jungle, desert, sea and mountain. In Fire and Flood, we see the jungle and desert portions of the race and this provides an interesting change of scenery as we progress through the book, this opens up the plot to so many more weather anomalies, hazards, predators and more and ultimately sets the pace and tension for the rest of the book.

Tella makes a decisive tactic to group with other Contenders, at first following the brooding and mysterious Guy Chambers before swiftly joining a more ‘homely’ group who are all there for one reason, to obtain the Cure for their loved one. This is a great move by the author as following a young girl whinge and whine her way through the jungle can and will get very boring, very quickly but chuck in a bunch of Contenders with wildly differentiating personalities and we have diversity. Diversity creates conflict, humor, intrigue, the list is endless, but one thing it isn’t, is boring.

Fire and Flood is a fantastic mix of action, tension and imagination. A cross between The Hunger Games and Pokemon/Digimon. The Plot twists are often shocking and unexpected and I personally think surprising your reader is the key to good writing, and I was well and truly surprised…and freaked in some cases and I could not stop reading.

Though the comparisons to The Hunger Games are rife, the only thing that resonates with that series is the competition itself, but even then, the Contenders aren’t made to kill each other, and most group up and help each other out which doesn’t sound very Hunger Games-y to me. I’m merely using it as a bench-mark to describe the book’s premise as a whole.

Fire and Flood is a refreshing read in a genre that has become all too repetitive and it will definitely be my go-to recommendation for a long while.

This review was originally posted on: [...]
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on 17 December 2015
I discovered this book on a rainy afternoon as I browsed my local bookshop. The beautiful cover drew me in straight away, and the blurb intrigued me, offering a story about a mysterious competition through treacherous terrain to win a cure for any illness.

Tella is a sixteen-year-old girl who has been uprooted from her home and best friend and is now living in fear that her brother will die any day. He is sick, and getting worse by the minute. When an unusual device turns up in Tella’s bedroom explaining that she could ‘win’ a cure for her brother she does what any caring sister would do – she signs up for life-changing, dangerous, and potentially lethal quest.

At first, I couldn’t shake the impression of Hunger Games meets Pokemon, but it didn’t take long to get swept up in the story. Tella’s character is well crafted; she has a girly-girl vibe about her, but as the story unfolds, we see a much deeper character begin to emerge. She loves glitter and make-up, but she can also be a kick-ass competitor.

As Tella begins her journey in the Brimstone Bleed competition, she meets various contenders along the way. Guy Chambers is the hot guy that every YA book needs to add a little sparkle. Harper is the mean-but-loveable friend with her own story to tell. Characters come and go throughout the book, some you mourn and others you breathe a sigh of relief over their departure. Scott isn’t afraid to tug at the readers’ heartstrings!

To assist the contenders, each character has a Pandora, which is a manufactured animal with special talents, such as a lion who breathes fire. Tella is paired with a small black fox who becomes as much a main character as her owner. The bond between Tella and her fox is heart-warming and shows yet another side to our heroine. I loved the Pandora twist in this book, it’s unique, and makes a pleasant change from dragons or other supernatural elements.

Fire & Flood is set in treacherous jungle and scorching desert, but we are told at the beginning of the novel that there are four ecosystems that our characters must survive. Salt & Stone is book two and continues the Brimstone Bleed competition as the characters face the ocean and mountain terrain. I rushed out to buy book two before I finished Fire & Flood.
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on 12 December 2015
So my librarian recommended this book to me, and I am so glad she did.
This book was AMAZING. You have a young girl named Tella who moved and left her city life behind. Yes how devastating. Her brother has a sickness and is dying what can she do? Well when she gets an invitation to become a Contender to receive a Cure to help her brother she does it. Though to be a contender in the Brimstone Bleed is something she has never seen or heard of before. You are in this race for three months THREE MONTHS that is a long time to be away from your family. So what happens in this race? Well you are thrown into certain environments and you have to be the first across the finish line you also get a Pandora of some sorts which have certain powers to help you. This race isn't just a simple run through and get to the finish line oh no, there is plenty of obstacles in the way.You have to find your own food, water and shelter, you have to adapt to the environments. That is what makes this book amazing in my eyes. I thought that was wicked awesome, I loved how the author used the Pandora's to help the one that received them. As we read on we see Tella make the decision to join in a group of those also in the race will it help her or not?
We proceed in the book and we learn via another player named Guy in the game who Tella is getting close to how all this came to be and why people are getting sick. It seems all those that are contenders are there for a reason and that being to help someone they care about.
I know this book is compared to the Hunger Games but I didn't get that while reading. The characters are rememberable even the side characters. Tella you can tell is finally coming into her skin of being strong and not following the pack mentality which is good.
Fire and Flood is action packed, a bit of romance coming to life, and a good plot. I totally want to write more but I feel as though I will be giving so much away. You have to read this book and I believe it will be in my top ten books for the year.
I am really ready to read book two to find out what can happen next.
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on 21 December 2015
But there’s often more truth found when we sleep than when we wake. Dad used to always say that.

Helpless to save her dying brother, and sensing her parents rising unease, Tella knows something isn't right. Cody is on his last legs and when an invitation turns up on her bed inviting her to compete in an elusive race named the Brimstone Bleed, she accepts it immediately; because the prize for winning the race is the Cure. The Cure to any illness. The Cure that can save Cody's life. As one of the most deadly competitions in existence, the race will lead her through the treacherous jungle and through the scoring desert. But it isn't just the elements Tella will be facing.

Fire and Flood fantastic, it takes the best elements from Suzanne Collin's The Hunger Games and Joelle Charbonneau's The Testing, to create a gripping, thrilling story that will hook you from the very first chapter. Victoria Scott's way of entangling the character's emotions with the readers was brilliant, I felt like I was there every step of the way. The Pandoras were an awesome aspect of the story and gave the book something that others didn't. I just really love this book :) Everything about it was phenomenal!

One thing I have read in other reviews, is the lack of knowledge given about the race itself. You're pretty much left in the dark, BUT YOU FIND EVERYTHING OUT IN THE SECOND BOOK (Salt and Stone). So don't fret!
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on 28 August 2016
I absolutely loved Fire and Flood. It is an amazing book which was similar to the Hunger Games. Fire and Flood is about Tella who's brother is sick with an incurable disease. It is then that Tella is invited to join the Brimstone Bleed the prize for winning is the cure to any disease. Tella goes without telling her family. First she must pick a Pandora egg. Then she must compete in 4 atmosphere's (jungle, desert, water and mountain). It is here she makes friends and falls in love with Guy. Another competitor in the race. I love that Tella discovers herself throughout this book and Salt and Stone (the sequel). I would highly recommend it. Can't wait for the third book!
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